Katina Mountanos (B.S. ’14) first became interested in the NYU Stern Undergraduate College after witnessing the success that her cousin achieved at Stern. Mountanos eventually found herself drawn to the school’s global footprint and its advantageous location in New York City.
“I witnessed the experiences my cousin (also named Katina Mountanos) had during college, and the success that she found afterward,” says Mountanos, who hails from Wantagh, New York. “During my own research, I was drawn to the international opportunities that Stern provided, along with the fact that it is based in the epicenter of the financial world.”
While enrolled at Stern, Mountanos was involved in a variety of extracurricular activities, with a focus on social impact and women’s empowerment.
“I was the President of a mentoring club called Women & Youth Supporting Each Other; I met with girls from a New York City public school each week to discuss different issues they faced,” she says. “I was also the Community Service Chairperson for the Undergraduate Stern Women in Business club.”
Mountanos also participated in the Stern Street Team, Stern Judiciary Committee, First Year Impact, Stern International Volunteers, and Stern Consulting Corps. By serving the community, Mountanos says that she gained leadership skills essential to the workplace and discovered her interests.
“I think that joining extracurricular activities provides some of the most rewarding experiences you can have in college, and allows you to develop strengths outside of the classroom,” she says.
Inside the Classroom
With a concentration in finance and minors in management and public policy, Mountanos found enjoyment inside the classroom as well. Among her favorite classes, she recommends Investment Banking with professor Charles Murphy.
“[His course] provides a real-life view of how an investment bank works, and the history of the financial sector,” says Mountanos. “As a finance major, it is important to understand this industry, even if you do not decide to pursue a career at a bank.
“Another class that I have found really applicable post-graduation is Negotiation and Consensus Building with professor Kelly See. Negotiations happen nearly every day, and it prepared me to engage in negotiations outside of the classroom.”
When asked who she looks up to and why, Mountanos says she is inspired by her parents for their sacrifices and the example they have set, as well as her cousin, Katina, for her determination. She also names entrepreneur and author Jacqueline Novogratz as an influential figure in her life.
“After reading Novogratz’s memoir, The Blue Sweater, I was in awe of her unwavering determination to change the world, and make it a better place using the power of business,” says Mountanos.
Mountanos is currently an analyst at Goldman Sachs, working in data analytics and environmental sustainability. She hopes to use business to positively impact society, more specifically on issues like the environment.
Her advice to future students is to seize the many opportunities that Stern provides, and to make “yes” their favorite word.
“This is the time in your life to learn as much as you can, both inside and outside of the classroom,” says Mountanos. “Don’t miss out on any of it!”
Alumni Spotlight: Katina Mountanos (BS '14)
Monday, March 2, 2015